Another day, another Planeswalker Duel Deck! Before we explore this week's compilation, make sure you're up to speed on the project.

Personally, I found Nissa, Steward of Elements super exciting when I first saw it. First of all, there's an X in the casting cost, and there's quite a bit of novelty to that. Secondly (and more importantly) I really enjoy how Nissa indicates one of The Gatewatch Planeswalkers exploring another color. I always thought they'd get into that a little more, and I was a bit more disappointed that they chose not to do that more often. Maybe it's just because Nissa is Green, so they figure she dips into other colors more naturally? I dunno. 

All I know is that Gideon, Champion of Justice should have been a Boros Planeswalker with other abilities, and Jace the character has probably been both Blue/White and Blue/Black at times. Now that Chandra seems to be taking more of a Team Player role in the fiction stories I've read, is Boros in her future too? I'm interested in finding out, and I hope WotC dips a toe in these waters in the future, if only to make this project more fun for me. 

Anyway, I was designing this deck last year when M20 came out, and since Nissa is the Steward of Elements and Green/Blue Elementals was a very strong draft deck in that format...sometimes inspiration comes from the mundane, but it can still make something rad.

Check out our two-color brew:

Magic: The Gathering TCG Deck - Nissa, Steward of Elements by Andy Hurst

'Nissa, Steward of Elements' - constructed deck list and prices for the Magic: The Gathering Trading Card Game from TCGplayer Infinite!

Created By: Andy Hurst

Event:

Rank:

Freeform (Casual)

Market Price: $25.91

Cards

Bond of Flourishing

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.11

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/188603_200w.jpg

Look at the top three cards of your library. You may reveal a permanent card from among them and put it into your hand. Put the rest on the bottom of your library in any order. You gain 3 life.

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Hydroform

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.03

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/67565_200w.jpg

Target land becomes a 3/3 Elemental creature with flying until end of turn. It's still a land.

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Simic Guildgate

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.09

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/227312_200w.jpg

Simic Guildgate enters the battlefield tapped.
{T}: Add {G} or {U}.

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Forest

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.99

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/230468_200w.jpg

({T}: Add {G}.)

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Vigean Intuition

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.10

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/13983_200w.jpg

Choose a card type, then reveal the top four cards of your library. Put all cards of the chosen type revealed this way into your hand and the rest into your graveyard. (Artifact, creature, enchantment, instant, land, planeswalker, sorcery, and tribal are card types.)

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Frost Lynx

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.02

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/212749_200w.jpg

When Frost Lynx enters the battlefield, tap target creature an opponent controls. That creature doesn't untap during its controller's next untap step.

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Terrain Elemental

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.16

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/122885_200w.jpg

Buy This Card! https://shop.tcgplayer.com/magic/kaladesh/terrain-elemental

Churning Eddy

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.13

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/9727_200w.jpg

Return target creature and target land to their owners' hands.

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Verdant Rebirth

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.08

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/145761_200w.jpg

Until end of turn, target creature gains "When this creature dies, return it to its owner's hand."
Draw a card.

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Fertile Thicket

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.09

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/122228_200w.jpg

Fertile Thicket enters the battlefield tapped.
When Fertile Thicket enters the battlefield, you may look at the top five cards of your library. If you do, reveal up to one basic land card from among them, then put that card on top of your library and the rest on the bottom in any order.
{T}: Add {G}.

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Halimar Depths

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.42

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/212416_200w.jpg

Halimar Depths enters the battlefield tapped.
When Halimar Depths enters the battlefield, look at the top three cards of your library, then put them back in any order.
{T}: Add {U}.

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Thicket Crasher

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.02

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/192653_200w.jpg

Trample (This creature can deal excess combat damage to the player or planeswalker it's attacking.)
Other Elementals you control have trample.

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Aether Mutation

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.25

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/8055_200w.jpg

Return target creature to its owner's hand. Create X 1/1 green Saproling creature tokens, where X is that creature's converted mana cost.

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Rabid Bite

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.02

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/221943_200w.jpg

Target creature you control deals damage equal to its power to target creature you don't control.

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Seed Guardian

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.10

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/111070_200w.jpg

Reach
When Seed Guardian dies, create an X/X green Elemental creature token, where X is the number of creature cards in your graveyard.

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Yavimaya's Embrace

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.05

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/219589_200w.jpg

Enchant creature
You control enchanted creature.
Enchanted creature gets +2/+2 and has trample.

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Incubation // Incongruity

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.10

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/182411_200w.jpg

Buy This Card! https://shop.tcgplayer.com/magic/ravnica-allegiance/incubation-incongruity

Plasm Capture

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.76

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/96172_200w.jpg

Counter target spell. At the beginning of your next precombat main phase, add X mana in any combination of colors, where X is that spell's converted mana cost.

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Woodland Changeling

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.91

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/15685_200w.jpg

Changeling (This card is every creature type.)

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Zendikar's Roil

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.26

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/222672_200w.jpg

Whenever a land enters the battlefield under your control, create a 2/2 green Elemental creature token.

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Nissa, Steward of Elements

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $1.46

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/212214_200w.jpg

+2: Scry 2.
0: Look at the top card of your library. If it's a land card or a creature card with converted mana cost less than or equal to the number of loyalty counters on Nissa, Steward of Elements, you may put that card onto the battlefield.
−6: Untap up to two target lands you control. They become 5/5 Elemental creatures with flying and haste until end of turn. They're still lands.

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Leafkin Druid

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.05

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/192651_200w.jpg

{T}: Add {G}. If you control four or more creatures, add {G}{G} instead.

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Cloudkin Seer

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.10

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/192686_200w.jpg

Flying
When Cloudkin Seer enters the battlefield, draw a card.

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Quicksilver Elemental

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $1.08

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/11370_200w.jpg

{U}: Quicksilver Elemental gains all activated abilities of target creature until end of turn. (If any of the abilities use that creature's name, use this creature's name instead.)
You may spend blue mana as though it were mana of any color to pay the activation costs of Quicksilver Elemental's abilities.

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Supreme Exemplar

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.55

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/18075_200w.jpg

Flying
Champion an Elemental (When this enters the battlefield, sacrifice it unless you exile another Elemental you control. When this leaves the battlefield, that card returns to the battlefield.)

Buy This Card! https://shop.tcgplayer.com/magic/morningtide/supreme-exemplar

Molder

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.14

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/14298_200w.jpg

Destroy target artifact or enchantment with converted mana cost X. It can't be regenerated. You gain X life.

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Waterknot

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.13

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/216414_200w.jpg

Enchant creature
When Waterknot enters the battlefield, tap enchanted creature.
Enchanted creature doesn't untap during its controller's untap step.

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Air Elemental

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.02

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/192856_200w.jpg

Flying

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Sturdy Hatchling

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.10

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/27217_200w.jpg

Sturdy Hatchling enters the battlefield with four -1/-1 counters on it.
{G/U}: Sturdy Hatchling gains shroud until end of turn. (It can't be the target of spells or abilities.)
Whenever you cast a green spell, remove a -1/-1 counter from Sturdy Hatchling.
Whenever you cast a blue spell, remove a -1/-1 counter from Sturdy Hatchling.

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Embodiment of Spring

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.11

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/93239_200w.jpg

{1}{G}, {T}, Sacrifice Embodiment of Spring: Search your library for a basic land card, put it onto the battlefield tapped, then shuffle your library.

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Watercourser

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.01

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/167879_200w.jpg

{U}: Watercourser gets +1/-1 until end of turn.

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Yarok's Wavecrasher

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.03

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/192789_200w.jpg

When Yarok's Wavecrasher enters the battlefield, return another creature you control to its owner's hand.

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Wildsize

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.01

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/227218_200w.jpg

Target creature gets +2/+2 and gains trample until end of turn.
Draw a card.

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Temporal Spring

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.25

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/8039_200w.jpg

Put target permanent on top of its owner's library.

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Risen Reef

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.50

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/192540_200w.jpg

Whenever Risen Reef or another Elemental enters the battlefield under your control, look at the top card of your library. If it's a land card, you may put it onto the battlefield tapped. If you don't put the card onto the battlefield, put it into your hand.

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Chillbringer

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.03

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/183347_200w.jpg

Flying
When Chillbringer enters the battlefield, tap target creature an opponent controls. It doesn't untap during its controller's next untap step.

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Island

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.72

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/230465_200w.jpg

({T}: Add {U}.)

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Mulldrifter

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.34

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/226673_200w.jpg

Flying
When Mulldrifter enters the battlefield, draw two cards.
Evoke {2}{U} (You may cast this spell for its evoke cost. If you do, it's sacrificed when it enters the battlefield.)

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Bond of Insight

Color Identity:U

Market Price: $0.09

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/188607_200w.jpg

Each player mills four cards. Return up to two instant and/or sorcery cards from your graveyard to your hand. Exile Bond of Insight.

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Broken Bond

Color Identity:G

Market Price: $0.50

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/162219_200w.jpg

Destroy target artifact or enchantment. You may put a land card from your hand onto the battlefield.

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Woodland Stream

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.05

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/227288_200w.jpg

Woodland Stream enters the battlefield tapped.
{T}: Add {G} or {U}.

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Thornwood Falls

Color Identity:G,U

Market Price: $0.05

ImageURL: https://tcgplayer-cdn.tcgplayer.com/product/227297_200w.jpg

Thornwood Falls enters the battlefield tapped.
When Thornwood Falls enters the battlefield, you gain 1 life.
{T}: Add {G} or {U}.

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The Game Plan

At the prerelease for M20, my buddy and I played Two-Headed Giant because we couldn't make it to the individual event the previous day. Our decks were thoroughly medium, and our first round opponents dropped a quick Risen Reef. We had some expensive kill spell in our hand, and the question became whether or not to use our precious removal on the Reef or let it go for a minute to continue developing our board. We chose the latter option. ...Reader, let me inform you that our choice was dead wrong. Over the next turn or two I think our opponent drew something like 4 other cards and put a land or two in play. (They had Scampering Scorcher and let me tell you, it did not go well for us. Plus that dude had 2 Mu Yanling, Sky Dancer and a Chandra, Awakened Inferno. We still talk about that game sometimes.)

We're just Blue/Green here, so no Scampering Scorchers for us, but we have the ultimate dream of Risen Reef and Zendikar's Roil. Playing a land makes an elemental, which triggers the Reef, which can reveal a land, which can make an elemental. Et cetera. Even if we don't get that combo, the goal is to get Risen Reef cooking and just abuse it as much as possible. We're flush with Elementals, and although few of them are extremely impressive on their own, we're going for a greater-than-the-sum-of-their-parts vibe here, and I think that vibe is flourishing. 

Our removal is terrible, as befits a Blue/Green deck, but we've got some top notch bounce that can advance our board state comfortably. (I hesitate to use the word Tempo here, even though we all know what it means in this context but I've never been able to adequately define the term.) Aether Mutation is the big one, and Temporal Spring or Churning Eddy can also be dangerous. Beyond that, Waterknot is serviceable. 

The Rares 

I've always had a soft spot for this card. The ability to copy any activated ability strikes me as very Blue/Green (probably due to the ol' Experiment Kraj), and it's here on a fairly relevant and not horribly costed body. This elemental was also a little ahead of its time in letting us spend mana of any color for those abilities; it's ubiquitous now, but not so much back in the day. 

Sometimes, you just gotta go bigger. Our entire creature base is made from elementals, so there should always be something to feed the Champion trigger. For maximum fun, choose something like Mulldrifter, Chillbringer, or Frost Lynx so that you've got some insurance for Gigantor biting it. 

What Mana Drain should have always cost. I've found it a bit difficult to put some of the Rare counterspells in these decks because of the wealth of alternatives at lower rarities. Having said that, Plasm Capture can be such a fun card because of the enormous swings it creates, and since this deck is all about creating some wild snowball effects, The Capture seemed right at home in a deck like this. Generally speaking, I like to think of the following shortcut for this counter: try to hit a spell with similar color on the expansion symbol. Rares or bust! 

What if elementals could steal creatures? The answer to that question turns up a card that looks exactly like the Embrace here. It's wildly expensive, I can't argue that. However, if we get Risen Reef cooking at any point during a game, the ramp involved will be substantial and all of a sudden the cost won't look so onerous anymore. And the effect is mindblowing.

Unsung Hero

Okay, okay, you caught me. Mulldrifter isn't exactly unsung. Most people know it's excellent. I just wanted to talk about it for a minute here. I really miss Lorwyn Draft; Mulldrifter was the best Common but there was some stiff competition. Silvergill Douser, Oblivion Ring, Nameless Inversion, and Lash Out were all excellent top Commons, and still Big Drifts snatched the title. I'm pretty sure that in all other iterations the flying catfish got bumped up to Uncommon, and with today's standards that probably fits better. 

We're not playing the ways to truly maximize it here, but the flexibility of either acting as a plain old Divination (while still triggering Risen Reef) or getting a nice little evasive body out of it allows for a lot of power from a random Common creature. There are so few times we'd ever want to use one of our precious bounce spells on our own creature. It's probably never. But if we would ever want to, Mulldrifter is the top candidate.